How to be Successful with New Years Resolutions

Would you like to find a way to get results from New Years resolutions so they don’t fall by the way side? There is a way to be successful and you can do it! For the sake of having an example, let’s say you want to quit smoking. Great – good for you! Wait a minute ….. do you really want to do that? Because the key is right there, you have to want to make the change. If you’re not committed, the chances are it will fall apart and you’ll feel like a failure. Notice I said “feel like a failure”, because there is no such thing as a failure if you can learn from each step, and remember what you learned the next time you want to make a change.

So are you thinking of something you’d like to do in the New Year, and planning to make a resolution? Are you committed? Awesome! How can you make sure you will succeed? Find a coach! It’s tough to make changes and if you’re like most people, you’re better off with someone in your corner to help you stay focused on your goal. A coach can be a friend, relative, co-worker, or a professional coach; the key is to pick someone who cares enough to want to see you succeed.

What’s next? Have a clear picture in your mind of where you want to go. In the smoking example, see yourself as a non-smoker or otherwise, see yourself as you would like to be. You could practice saying to yourself “I choose to be a non-smoker” or “I choose to be …..” If you can’t get a mental image of yourself as you want to be, such as without a cigarette, there’s a good chance you’re not ready to quit smoking. If you’re thinking about it though, and something tells you it would be good to change, how about you keep right on thinking until you‘re ready to commit? There are many tips and techniques to help you move forward to where you can see a picture of yourself as would like to be in your mind’s eye. You might want to consider a time frame which will motivate you into action; it can be a random time such as 3 months or 1 year, and it can be an event such as a wedding or a birth.

Goal setting is a different process for each of us, and there are many useful skills to learn about setting goals that are achievable. What will work for you? A quick way to assess whether a goal is right for you is to ask yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 if you are confident that you will achieve this goal. The confidence rating should be at least a 7 or the goal probably needs tweaking a bit – it’s either too hard or too easy. Adjusting a goal so that you will succeed is what counts, and each step up the staircase brings you closer to the top.

Making a change in your life is exciting as it’s all about new habits, new people, and new hope for the future. It takes work to make a change but it also takes work to stay the same; if you’re stressed about a habit that you would like to change, then your energy bank is leaking. Personal energy is a precious commodity and it’s wise if we can be aware of ways to boost our energy so we can recharge ourselves. If you’re a smoker, it might help to consider what you could do with the money spent on cigarettes – what would you do with that new found money?

Having fun with change will encourage you to keep moving towards the vision of yourself as you would like to be. Laughter goes a long way to support us and to raise our energy levels; this keeps us in a good frame of mind so we’re able to stay on track. Having someone beside us makes it more fun to work on something such as quitting smoking. It seems to be human nature to honour a promise we make to another person and to think we can break a promise we make to ourselves. Talking to another person who gives us an objective look at ourselves is most reassuring, and if you can share a joke it spurs you on towards success.

As we go forward into the New Year, I encourage you to be kind to yourself every day. Love yourself enough to want to move towards your best state of wellness, and forgive yourself if you’ve tried in the past and given up too soon. Think about your strengths and how you can use them to achieve your goal. Outfit your toolbox, gather your team, and if you want professional guidance, hire a coach! Being accountable to someone else will help you maintain a new behaviour until it becomes a habit. You can be anything you want to be!

Copyright, Lynn Roodbol
Lynn Roodbol, Certified Wellness Coach